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Born This Day
Louis Armstrong and Steve Andrews.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Jazz North East presents Alan Wilkinson & Akode - Jazz Cafe June 18

Alan Wilkinson(Reeds), Kim Johannesen(gtr), Ola Hoyer(bass), Dag Erik Knedal Andersen(drums)
(Review by Steve H/photos courtesy of Ken Drew.)
Whirlwind, psychedelic, free jazz of the highest order. A captivating hypnotic explosion of sound from start to finish! All four seemed to play in unison at 100mph whilst still managing to allow the audience to pick out the outstanding individual solos. 
Wilkinson seamlessly alternating between bass clarinet, alto and baritone saxes produced extravagant, passionate, solos sometimes wild, sometimes melodious. Hoyer on bass was like a swashbuckling musical musketeer brandishing his bow like a rapier as he attacked the bass.  Knedal never stopped driving the band with his relentless drumming and Johanneson augmented everything going on around him with ever so subtle nuanced effects on guitar. 

The first set came in at approximately 40 minutes and 6 seconds according to Wilkinson’s recording machine. The second set lasted a mere 36 minutes so Wilkinson asked if anyone wanted an encore and the response from the select audience was a unanimous ‘yes’. This kind of music may not be to everyone’s taste, in fact when I dipped into a You Tube clip I was not convinced. It was only when immersed in the actual performance that I could really appreciate the full force of the music and the fascinating interactions between the quartet.  Simply mesmerising and exhilarating.
Steve H.

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